The City of Winnipeg undertakes a wide range of projects every year to serve the needs of residents and accommodate the future growth of the city in accordance with OurWinnipeg, the City's municipal development plan that sets the vision for the next 25 years.
The City's Real Estate Branch acts on behalf of other City departments to acquire land needed for capital projects. To help you gain a better understanding of the land acquisition process, the following information explains how property plays a key role in being able to undertake new projects to help our city continue to grow and prosper.
Frequently asked questions
The City acquires land through two methods:
- Purchase and Sale:
a mutual agreement is made between the City and the landowner.
the City takes the land without the consent of the landowner.
The City prefers to acquire private property by way of purchase and sale whenever possible. In cases where project timelines do not allow the City and landowner to reach a mutual agreement, the City may need to acquire private property through expropriation. Expropriations are performed in a fair manner, with the land being necessary for a project to proceed.
The City of Winnipeg Charter allows City Council to expropriate private property in accordance with The Expropriation Act. The Act outlines the City's requirements and responsibilities during an expropriation, as well as a property owner's rights.
Within 30 days of receiving notice of intended expropriation, a landowner may object to the expropriation in writing to the City of Winnipeg and the Minister of Justice. Once an objection is filed, the Minister of Justice appoints an Inquiry Officer to determine if the expropriation is fair and reasonably necessary. Landowners are provided the opportunity to provide testimony at an inquiry.
No; but the City has the right to request a waiver of the inquiry from the Province. A waiver may be granted if the City has completed extensive consultations with affected landowners.
The recommendations of an inquiry are forwarded to City Council, who then determines whether to amend the expropriation, abandon the expropriation, or keep the original plan.
Property owners are typically contacted months before expropriations commence; most often during the planning phase of the project (i.e. open houses, stakeholder meetings, etc.).
No. The City cannot take possession of expropriated land until after the owner is served with a Notice of Possession. This Notice occurs several months after the expropriation process is initiated. Landowners have 30 days to vacate the property after they receive a Notice of Possession.
Both options are possible. The City makes every effort to minimize the amount of property taken.
Whether the property is purchased or expropriated, the landowner will receive an offer based on current market value.
Yes. Negotiations are part of most purchases and expropriations.
Landowners are entitled to file a claim at the Land Value Appraisal Commission if they oppose the City's offer of compensation.
Although the property owner and City representative may agree to terms, the settlement requires approval by City Council.
Property owners are compensated for the value of their property up to the date that the Declaration of Expropriation is approved by City Council.
The City is obligated to pay for reasonable costs arising out of the expropriation, for example, relocation of a fence.
Yes. The City is obligated to pay for reasonable legal fees arising out of the expropriation.
Yes. The City is obligated to pay for reasonable appraisal costs arising out of the expropriation.
Section 35 of the City's Zoning By-law identifies the effects on property zoning when an expropriation or street widening occurs.
View a PDF of the Land Acquisition FAQs
Policy for the Sale, Acquisition, Rental, Leasing and Management of Properties
Contact the Real Estate Branch
Real Estate Branch
2nd Floor - 65 Garry St.
Winnipeg, MB R3C 4K4
- Phone: 311